Friday, August 27, 2010

SPORTS>>’Rabbits realigning quickly

Leader sportswriter

Doug Bost hopes the minor disappointment following Lonoke’s scrimmage game against Oak Grove last Monday does not escalate into major disappointment this week.

And the shuffle to prevent further disappointment has been ongoing at the practice field and in the film room as Bost prepares his Jackrabbits for the season opener against a fleet Star City team. Lonoke meets Star City in the Hooten’s Kickoff Classic at

Arkansas-Pine Bluff’s Golden Lion Stadium at 5:30 p.m. on Monday.

Senior quarterback Ty Towers leads Stary City from the Spread formation, although he played primarily as a junior. Towers who runs the 40-yard dash in 4.4 seconds, is a crafty option quarterback and s not the only speed demon in the Bulldogs’ backfield.

Senior running backs Demetri Goins and Hosia Rochell each rushed for over 1,000 yards in their junior season, and are both listed with 4.6 times in the 40.

“Looking at our schedule, this could very well be the best team we play all season,” Bost said. “They went to the second round of the playoffs last year, and have eight starters back on defense, and six on offense. They are a very veteran team.”

Question marks linger following Lonoke’s scrimmage against Oak Grove. Bost said he was pleased with Keli Bryant’s ball carrying and senior quarterback Logan DeWhitt’s passing.

But the offense turned the ball over three times, and the defense gave up over 300 yards to the Hornets during the brief encounter.

“We’ve got to have a good week of practice,” Bost said, admitting the scrimmage was disappointing. “But to be fair to the kids, we only had one day to get ready for those guys. The rest of the time, we lined up against the look we will see from Star City.

“But, I mean, three fumbles — turnovers — you can’t beat anybody if you’re turning the ball over like that.”

Changes are under way on defense. Personnel will be moved around on the line and in the linebackers group. Of the linebackers, junior T.J. Scott is still in place, while the other spots are under further review.

The senior-led secondary is the only part of the defense that will not undergo further experimentation.

The linebacker situation will be key against a Bulldogs’ offense that runs more like a wishbone team while lining up shotgun.

“They run out of the spread, and that’s about 90 percent of what they try to do,” Bost said. “They go for a lot of option and speed sweeps. We can’t let anyone outside, and that’s what they’re going to try and do. We have to concentrate on holding them.”

The Jackrabbits’ offense came away with one score in the scrimmage, but moved the ball through the air and on the ground.

Senior quarterback Logan DeWhitt spread the ball equally among receivers.